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Tax Credits Blog

WOTC Needs your Help!

We must act now to insure the WOTC program does not go on hiatus again! The WOTC tax credit law is set to expire on Dec. 31 2013 unless Congress acts to extend it. There is currently a bill before the U.S. Senate called a doc fix for Medicare that will stop a cut in doctor’s payments from happening. We are trying to get a temporary extension for WOTC amended on to this doc fix bill, which has been identified as the last chance this year to extend the WOTC program as it is the last item the Senate will take up this year. Next year is an election year, and tax legislation will be difficult if not impossible to pass. In that case, it will have to wait until 2015 to be extended.

Please help us in this measure to ensure you can earn the WOTC tax credit in 2014. According to Paul Suplizio of The WOTC Coalition, here are 2 actions you can take to help:

Action Number 1:
Immediately contact your Democratic and Republican senators by e-mail, fax, and telephone with this message:

“WOTC will expire on December 31st with the loss of a million jobs for veterans, people with disabilities, food stamp recipients and others, and there’s little chance it will be renewed before the next Congress. Please ensure the nation’s commitment to these jobs for those with the highest unemployment rates is upheld by speaking out at your Party meeting when the Senate returns, and insist that a one-year extension of WOTC should have the highest priority for inclusion in the “doc fix” bill the Senate will pass before adjournment. Ask your Leader to work to include a WOTC extension in an amendment when the doc fix bill comes to the Senate floor. A WOTC extension will not increase the Federal deficit—it will have the same impact on revenues next year as this year.”

Action Number 2:
If your senator is a member of the Senate Finance Committee, fax him or her a letter on your company’s letterhead, and then follow up a phone call to their tax legislative assistant, with this message:

“When the Senate Finance Committee meets to mark up the Medicare doctors payments bill on December 12th, please support an amendment to include a one-year extension of WOTC in the bill; otherwise, one million jobs for veterans, people with disabilities, food stamp recipients and others will expire with the likelihood they will not be renewed till the next Congress. Please uphold the nation’s commitment to those experiencing the highest unemployment rates in the jobs market by ensuring the Finance Committee acts to include a WOTC extension in the “doc fix” bill the Senate will pass before adjournment. A WOTC extension will not increase the Federal deficit—it will have the same impact on revenues next year as this year.”

To find out if your Senators are members of the Senate Finance Committee, click here: http://www.finance.senate.gov/about/membership/

Please be aware the WOTC Coalition has been working for an amendment in the Finance Committee for a one-year WOTC extension since last week. They are in touch with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Senator Max Baucus’ people and other members of the Finance Committee who might offer the amendment. Veterans organizations, and organizations serving people with disabilities have been mobilized to weigh in. We will keep you informed and may be calling on you again—this is the last best opportunity before 2015 and we hope you’ll pitch in to get the job done.

Thank you very much for your help!

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Back in Business

Finally!  The goverment shutdown was averted so now the agencies are back to work in processing the tax credit applications we've been sending in.  Of course, there's a lot still to be done this year.  The WOTC program expires in 2 1/2 months (12/31/13) so there will be a ground swell of need to get to your congressmen to be sure the programs are either extended for a period of time or, ideally, added to the permanent tax code as is proposed under Obama's budget.  The "feel good" part of all this is that President Obama got pretty much all he wanted to avert the shutdown so, if that carries forward to budget meetings we should be in good shape!

 

Ken Brice

 

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A Quick Update on the Government Shutdown

You may not have realized it but the government shutdown affects the speed of certification of the WOTC program. The good folks who administer the program are laid off as a part of this ridiculous stand-off so we won't see any work being done to certify your applicants until its over. We are still working and doing all that we can (or that is possible) with this current situation, so feel free to call us with any questions/issues you may have.

Thank you for your continued business, support, and patience,

Chris Brice
V.P. CFO Resources and Employer Incentives Operations

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WOTC well positioned for upcoming budget talks

From Vaughn Hromiko of wotcplanet.com:

Although not new news, it’s important to reiterate.  The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (or WOTC) has the stated support of the White House and the majority-party leadership in the U.S. Senate.  In fact, the President’s budget proposes to make WOTC a permanent feature of the tax code.

With the stage now being set for budget talks, the WOTC Coalition is ready to press this issue.  WOTC will be on the table for discussion.  By no measure, however, is an extension a sure thing. We are approaching a key moment when WOTC proponents must intensify their lobbying efforts.

Paul Suplizio of the WOTC Coalition addressed the issue this morning.

Passing a bill to fund the government through December 15th is essential before budget talks on spending and taxes between Congress and the White House can get underway. Those talks will be up against a December 15th deadline for completion, and a looming sequester on January 15th will be a further incentive to deal.

The question of extending WOTC and other expiring tax provisions will be on the table during these talks; thus, the period from October 1st to December 15th will be vital to WOTC’s future and demand an all-out effort by our Coalition.

The following is published here with permission.

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Subject: Senate Republicans Agree To Move Immediately To Government Funding Bill
From: Paul Suplizio
Date: Mon, September 23, 2013 2:57 am

September 23, 2013

Passing a bill to fund the government through December 15th is essential before budget talks on spending and taxes between Congress and the White House can get underway. Those talks will be up against a December 15th deadline for completion, and a looming sequester on January 15th will be a further incentive to deal.

The question of extending WOTC and other expiring tax provisions will be on the table during these talks; thus, the period from October 1st to December 15th will be vital to WOTC’s future and demand an all-out effort by our Coalition. Our thanks for the outpouring of support we’ve been getting.

We enter those talks with support of the President—the result of your Coalition’s efforts over four years to persuade key White House staff in the National Economic Council and OMB to include permanent WOTC in the President’s budget. This occurred for the first time in the fiscal 2014 budget issued in April.

By extension, we will have the support of the Democratic majority of the Senate as well as three experienced negotiators in the House—Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Assistant Leader James Clyburn, and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer. Congressman Charles Rangel, Emeritus Chairman of Ways and Means and lead supporter of WOTC among House Democrats, will be guarding the ramparts.

If the parties reach agreement, our aim is to win permanent authority for WOTC in the bill Congress passes to implement the deal—likely a further Continuing Resolution. If a debt ceiling bill is agreed sooner and negotiations on tax extenders are far along, we will work for WOTC passage on debt ceiling.

If the Parties fail to reach agreement, our aim is persuade House and Senate leaders to pass a tax extenders bill before Congress adjourns for the holidays in December.

Under the Constitution, revenue measures must originate in the House. The House has done its duty to fund the government, passing H.J. Res. 59, “Continuing Appropriations 2014” last Friday.

The Senate is poised to take the first vote Tuesday on a motion by the Majority Leader to end debate (known as “cloture”) and take up the bill. The motion will pass easily, as Republicans say they will join Democrats and Independents in voting to bring up the bill.

The Senate will then be in post-cloture debate—a 30-hour period in which amendments may be offered. Senator Reid, for the majority, will propose an amendment removing the House’s provision defunding Obamacare. Using a longstanding Rule of the Senate, Senator Reid will amend his own amendment, thus blocking any further amendments, and debate will proceed on the H.J. Res. 59 as amended by the Majority Leader.

Nevertheless, Republicans leading the charge for defunding Obamacare may try to tie up the Senate to gain leverage via points of order or delaying tactics.

By Thursday or Friday, Senator Reid should be able to move to end debate and vote on final passage, which will require 60 votes. Senator Cruz and others plan to filibuster this motion and persuade their colleagues to stand together, which will deny Democrats the 60 senators needed to vote on final passage.

When and how this impasse will be resolved is uncertain, but with time running out for returning the bill to the House for passage before midnight September 30th, Senator Reid’s plan is to hold further cloture votes until he wins 60. If he’s successful, the bill will pass.

Democrats are in revolt against the House’s funding levels for 2014, and are railing at the President’s promise to accept them. Senator Reid hasn’t made a decision on amending the House bill to increase funding levels and try to avert sequester—he’s under heavy pressure by his caucus, but knows he’s courting a shutdown if the House returns the bill to the Senate, as time will run out.

PAUL E. SUPLIZIO
President, WOTC Coalition

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Now's the time!

With the goverment wrestling for positioning on the budget now is the time to ask your legislator to support the permanent extension of the Work Opportunity Tax Credits. A simple letter explaining how important these tax credits are to your business should get their attention. In most states, you can send an email directly to your Congressman or Senator or both simply by going online and typing in the person's name. Even though it is my opinion that this part of Obama's budget will survive whatever political wars happen over the next week, additional support can never hurt. Ken Brice .